Vanilla was discovered in Mexico and reported by the French court of King in 1604. Reported in Spain by Cortés in the early nineteenth century, it will be marketed until the eighteenth century.
Many vanilla plants reported by Cortés never produce pods because it lacked essential to fertilization: the endemic bees of Mexico, the stingless bees. They could sneak into the corolla of the orchid to deposit pollen on the pistil. For nearly two centuries scholars worldwide tried unsuccessfully to fertilize the plant.
In 1841, a young slave, Edmond Albius, have succeeded for the first time to fertilize artificially the vanilla. However, although the single impregnation process was discovered, it does not allow itself to obtain a good quality product. The islanders have progressively developed and perfected the method of preparation of vanilla.
Very quickly, the process extends to the neighboring island Madagascar.It is in the late nineteenth century that the first vanilla plants are planted by French settlers from the meeting. Since Madagascar is the undisputed market leader in terms of volume of production and in terms of product quality.